“We would eat our pencils at school if they had nutritional value.”
That’s what Zach Eck, a seventh grader, told KAKE10, a Wichita TV station. He and a number of fellow students at St. Mark’s school near Colwich, Kan., are protesting the new USDA school-lunch regulations that limit the number of calories in a given meal, saying they don’t think they get enough food. They’ve said the changes are especially hard on student athletes, who often only get one meal between arriving at school at 8:30 a.m. and leaving after practice at 5:30 p.m.
And they’ve got some allies in Congress. The Hill reports that Representative Steve King (R., Iowa) has introduced a piece of legislation called the “No Hungry Kids Act” to eliminate calorie caps on school lunches. It would also “protect the rights of parents to send their children to school with the foods of their choice,” according to a statement from Representative Tim Huelskamp, one of the bill’s original co-sponsors. Currently, lunches served to high-school students can’t have more than 850 calories, per new regulations prefaced by remarks from Michelle Obama.
“Thanks to the Nutrition Nannies at the USDA, America’s children are going hungry at school,” Huelskamp said in the statement.